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AIPEF cautions government on Electricity (Amendment ) bill
V K Gupta | 16 Feb 2015

The standing committee on energy will listen to all stake holders in next three to four months before submitting its recommendations, said Kirti Somaiya Chairman of Parliamentary Committee on energy.

Somaiya was addressing a seminar, "Takeaways from the Electricity Amendment Bill 2014" organized by Bombay Chamber of Commerce and Industry. He addressed the audience about the importance of power sector. He further spoke about the steps government should and will take to engage more with the industry. He said that the standing committee will listen to the views of various electricity regulators on February 18.

In next two to three months all the 15 categories of stake holders will be given time to present their views. After taking into account the views of all stake holders the committee will submit its recommendation.

Shalinder Dubey, Chairman, All India Power Engineers Federation (AIPEF) cautioned that the proposed bill is undesirable and uncalled for in the present Indian power scenario. He was speaking on the topic of feasibility of multiple supplier licensees in the power distribution.

Dubey said the main objective of the amendment seems to be to push the commercialization of electricity, opening up the sector before the profit motive of international corporate houses. The priorities of Government seems to be in favour of high income groups where people want 24X7 quality power supply without bothering for tariff. The fate of those poor people who do not have power connection will be simply sealed as the power generation in country is much lower than power demand.

The experience and effect of market power in a scarce market has not been considered in formulating the proposal. As India is energy starved nation, reducing price of power through competition is impractical. The multiple licensee system will help only "cherry picking" and the deterioration of the incumbent public sector licensee, which will be the only responsible for supplying electricity to the unprivileged common man.

Bombay Chamber Director General, Vikas Gadre; Chairperson of Maharashtra Electricity Regulatory Commission, Chandra Iyengar and a Senior Consultant from Power Sector Radhakrishna were the others at the podium.

The other speakers included Rajesh Mendhiratta of India Energy exchange (IEX), R R Mehta from Reliance Energy and Rajeev Mishra from Power Trading Corporation sought more benefits from the Government to implement these proposals.

(VK Gupta is spokesperson for AIPEF)